Philadelphia Eagles star Zach Ertz is skipping minicamp as he looks for a way out of Philadelphia. Unfortunately for the Pro Bowl tight end, who has been the subject of NFL trade rumors for months, it seems the Eagles aren’t any closer to moving him.
The tension between the two sides arose last summer as contract talks broke down. Unable to sign Ertz to a long-term deal, Philadelphia started shopping its star tight end before the NFL trade deadline. While a deal never came to fruition, an offseason departure felt inevitable.
Multiple teams called Philadelphia about a trade, with the Los Angeles Chargers and Buffalo Bills among the most involved. A deal seemingly came close in March, but talks broke off and the Eagles hoped to move Ertz during the 2021 NFL Draft.
With the NFL Draft in the rearview mirror, the Eagles are closing in on mandatory minicamp and Ertz isn’t with the team. The three-time Pro Bowl selection still badly wants out, but the Eagles’ high asking price has pushed the few remaining interested clubs away.
We may now have an even greater ideas as to why, with general manager Howie Roseman sticking by his demands with summer approaching.
Will the Philadelphia Eagles trade Zach Ertz?
According to Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer, Roseman is still determined to get strong value back for the 30-year-old tight end. While everyone else around the league sees legitimate reasons to believe Ertz is declining, the Eagles seem convinced he is still a playmaker and worthy of a third- or fourth-round pick.
If Philadelphia was hoping to get a high pick for Ertz, it waited too long. After playing through a myriad of injuries in his career, the physical decline is evident. Ertz averaged a career-worst 9.3 yards per catch in 2020, playing in just 11 games and missing significant time due to a high-ankle sprain.
- Zach Ertz stats (2020): 36 receptions, 335 receiving yards, one touchdown, 50% catch rate, 2.8 yards after catch (PFF)
Ertz is owed an $8.5 million base salary this season, a high price to pay for a player who didn’t show any explosiveness last year and who can’t be trusted as a blocker.
The Eagles are almost certainly headed for a rebuild and will likely finish near the bottom of the NFL standings in 2021. Meanwhile, Ertz doesn’t want to be a part of this atmosphere anymore. It would be in everyone’s best interest to make a trade, landing whatever compensation is made available, but it seems Roseman wants to drag this out.